A HAMPSHIRE accountant has been fined for breach of VAT regulations.

Peter Lashmar, 66, sole proprietor of New Forest Tax Accountants in Lymington failed to pay a security bond of £12,600. He was sent a ‘notice of requirement’ to protect the public purse against any future tax defaults or company losses, based on his previous trading history.

Lashmar failed to pay the bond to HMRC, but continued to trade making taxable supplies – contravening the Value Added Tax Act 1994, and ran up VAT debts, so HMRC decided to take legal action. HMRC had already compulsorily registered the business for VAT, as Lashmar had failed to do so.

The accountant, who lives in West Way, Pennington has been ordered to pay compensation of £2,000 plus costs for failing to pay a security bond, enforced by HMRC, until three days before the case went to court.

Richard Wilkinson, assistant director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said: “Peter Lashmar is in a position of trust as an accountant. Had we not taken legal action, this security bond and VAT debt would still be outstanding. Anyone who is VAT registered, but has a history of failing to meet tax obligations, may be required to pay a security bond as a precautionary measure to protect future tax revenue. It is only right we tackle those businesses who fail to play by the rules.”

At Southampton Magistrates Court Lashmar pleaded guilty to making taxable supplies while the bond remained unpaid.